Atomic Force Microscopy of Ion-Beam Modified Carbon Fibers

  • Pearl W. Yip
  • Sin-Shong Lin


Several commercial PAN and pitch based carbon fibers were modified by a low voltage ion source of nitrogen or oxygen in the range of 400–1000 eV. The fiber reinforced epoxy composites made from the treated fibers were found to have higher interfacial strength than those made from the untreated ones. The improvement of adhesive strengths obtained from the transverse tensile stress measurement reached as high as three to four folds of the original fibers. This result could be explained from increased roughness and enhanced surface functionalities. The scanning electron microscope, which traditionally is used for surface characterization, fails to detect the mild surface alteration caused by the bombardment of the low-energy ion beams. Thus, the atomic force microscope (AFM) with near-atomic resolution might provide us the information needed for the understanding of ion-modified morphology. In the present investigation, the AFM instrument, manufactured by TopoMetrix is used in the characterization of the modified fibers. Preliminary AFM results indicate significant morphology and topography changes on the treated surfaces.


Carbon Fiber Untreated Fiber Material Research Society Symposium Proceeding Fiber Reinforce Epoxy Composite Pitch Base Carbon Fiber 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. I. P. W. Yip and S. S. Lin, “Effect of Surface Oxygen on Adhesion of Carbon Fiber Reinforced Composites,” in: Material Research Society Symposium Proceedings, 170: 339–344 (1990).Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    S. S. Lin and P. W. Yip, “Improved Mechanical Strengths of Epoxy Composites Obtained From Ion Beam Treated Carbon Fibers,” in Material Research Society Symposium Proceedings, 318: 381–386 (1994).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    E. Fitzer, “Carbon Fibers and Their Composites,” Springer-Verlag, Berlin, NY Tokyo (1983).Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    G. Binnig, C.F. Quate, and C. Gerber, Atomic force microscope, Phys. Rev. Lett., 56: 930–933 (1986).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    W. P. I Ioffman, Scanning probe microscopy of carbon fiber surfaces, Carbon, 30: 315–331 (1992).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    S. N. Magonov, A. Ya. Gorenberg, and II. J. Cantow, Atomic force microscopy on polymers and polymer related compounds, Polymer Bulletin, 28: 577–584 (1992).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    R..I. Smiley and W.N. Delgass, AFM, SEM and XPS Characterization of PAN-based carbon fibres etched in oxygen plasma, J. Mater. Sci. 28: 3601–3611 (1993)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Ittipol Jangchud, A.M. Serrano, R.K. Eby, P.E. Klunzinger, and M.A. Meador, “Investigation of Carbon Fiber Surfaces/Interfacial Bonding”, in: 21 Biennial Conference on Carbon, 197–199 (1993).Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    S.S. Lin and P. W. Yip, “Surface and Adhesion Studies of Carbon Fiber Modified by Low Energy Ion Beam”, in: Proc. of IUMRS-ICAM-93 Composite, Tokyo Japan, September 1993.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1997

Authors and Affiliations

  • Pearl W. Yip
    • 1
  • Sin-Shong Lin
    • 1
  1. 1.U.S. Army Materials Research LaboratoryWatertownUSA

Personalised recommendations